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Prelate welcomes war-crimes sentence for Charles Taylor

Catholic World News - May 31, 2012

Sierra Leone’s leading prelate welcomed an international court’s decision to sentence former Liberian President Charles Taylor to 50 years in prison for war crimes committed in Sierra Leone during the 1990s. Taylor planned “some of the most heinous and brutal crimes recorded in human history,” said the presiding judge in the case.

“The evil that Taylor did is irreparable,” said Father Gerardo Caglioni, a missionary in Sierra Leone. “Just think of the thousands and thousands of people forced to move from one country to another, with traumas of which child soldiers are still affected by and the rest of the population for sexual abuse and violence unheard of, physical and moral, which cannot be repaired by men.

“I believe in the justice system of the international court,” said Archbishop Edward Tamba Charles of Freetown. “The backbone of impunity has been broken. Nobody can escape. If you do bad, then you will be caught in the end, and brought to the court and you will be tried like Charles Taylor, and if you are found guilty, you will be condemned.”

“I am sure those who have been indicted will get the message, and those who are committing atrocities in other parts of Africa will see the writing on the wall and begin to act accordingly,” Archbishop Charles added.

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